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The inscription of one's name at the end of a writing, done by a secretary or a subordinate, to attest to the fact that such a writing has been signed by a principal or a superior, thereby vouching for the genuineness of the signature. To write one's name at the end of a document—in addition to the inscription of a name by another—to attest to the authenticity of the signature.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


to sign (a document already signed by another).
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

COUNTERSIGN. To countersign is to sign on the opposite side of an instrument already signed by some other person or officer, in order to secure its character of a genuine paper; as a bank note is signed by the president and countersigned by the cashier.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Professions other than doctors - including teachers, bank staff and social workers - have been able to countersign passport applications since 2001.
Prosecutor Graham Pickavance told the court that, in June 2001, the Passport Office in India Buildings became alerted to an application which was accompanied by a photograph, countersigned on the reverse by Saunders.
DSCA would in-turn coordinate, countersign, and mail the documents back to the implementing agency.
Clearly this is something that necessitates early negotiations and agreement between landlords and tenant and it seems that if the landlord is unwilling to countersign a tenant's application in circumstances where the tenancy does not include the prescriptive five years, the tenant may have to exclude some of the land affected from the agreement.
He said it seemed to him that far too wide a body of people were allowed to countersign an application and that consideration should be given to reducing the number.
This was pointed out to the cashier,but he said that he could countersign a piece of paper in front of another cashier at another bank and they might cash them.
Dame Winifred Prentice, 83, said she had agreed to countersign the cheques from a church-funded youth training company.
"He shall ensure the marker has signed the card, countersign the card himself and return it to the Committee as soon as possible.
Don't countersign traveller's cheques before cashing them.
As Fianna Fail Chief Whip, Ahern had to countersign cheques made payable out of the taxpayer-funded account of the then FF leader.
She had also written a note and asked a colleague to countersign it stating that she had delivered a Letts Diary to Archer's solicitors.